Why You Need Risk
“Only a real risk tests the reality of a belief.” - C.S. Lewis
My brother-in-law gave me a ride in his New Holland T8-275. It’s a tractor. Ryan is a Wisconsin dairy farmer and this isn’t Old McDonald on the farm. These days, tractors are sophisticated, computerized machines. They have GPS systems that can map a field and plow it on auto pilot.
Ryan said, “I’m gonna be honest. I’m a little nervous. The loan on this thing is more than my house.” I said, “Well, you gonna take back? Do you have to have the receipt?”
Ryan smiled. Then he said, “No, I’m OK. Everything is a risk.”
He’s right. Every time you get in your car, you take a risk. Life is not safe. We cannot insure against every conceivable liability. Just live a little and you find this out.
Instead of making a resolution this year, consider taking a risk. Why?
C.S. Lewis said, “Only a real risk tests the reality of a belief.” Do we really trust God? Do we really believe he’s leading us somewhere? Only a real risk will test that belief.
Most of us are risk averse. We prefer conservative investments. We prefer the predictability of routine. We tend to the safety of what we know versus the uncertainty of what we don’t.
But what if God called you to take a risk for him?
I’m not talking about stupid risk. Like gambling your life savings or driving without a seatbelt. That’s foolish risk. I’m talking about responding to something God calls you to do.
Rather than a resolution in 2016, consider a risk. What has God called me to do, and what will I risk to do it?
Begin an exercise plan.
Go back to school.
Take a new job or change careers.
Befriend someone in need.
Reach out to an estranged family member.
Re-up your commitment to your marriage.
Go on a mission trip.
Set a daily prayer time.
Spend less money and give more away.
Start a new venture.
Share the conviction of your faith with a friend.
In the afterglow of Christmas, think about how risky the incarnation is. In a poem titled "The Risk of Birth" by Madeline L’Engle, she writes, “Love still takes the risk of birth.” To be born of a woman was a great risk for Jesus. He traded the throne of heaven for the mess of earth.
The Bible is not a story of safety. It’s a story of risk. To create the world, God risked the possibility that it could be corrupted. To make a covenant – a binding promise with his people – he risked that it could be violated. The whole story is about a messy people and a God who risks everything to win them back.
After all the pain, after the cross and the blood, and the expense, God still says, “It was worth the risk. YOU are worth the risk.” Good Friday proves it.
So what will you risk in 2016? The only real risk is to do nothing.
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